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Tree Cities of the World

Birmingham TreePeople approached the City of Birmingham to apply to become a part of the Tree Cities in 2019. The Trustees were aware that our city exceeded the 5 separate criteria standards to successfully achieve it. We were incredibly proud, and still are, to receive this honour.

Tree Cities of the World banner being held by BTP, Councillors from BCC, and others in celebrations of Birmingham's recognition.
12/07/19 | Trees for Cities, Birmingham Trees for Life and Arbor Day Foundation President Dan Lambe met with BTP, to discuss Tree Cities of the World. Thank you to Cabinet Members Waseem Zaffar and John O’Shea for their support.

Why was Tree Cities started?

Mantova Green Cities Challenge, issued by world leaders during the 2018 World Forum on Urban Forests, included the Tree Cities of the World programme. This will connect cities worldwide, sharing our hard work, using other successful approaches to managing urban forests. This will continue to improve through the global network of arboriculture and forestry professionals. Here is the list of partners.

What is the programme about?

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and the Arbor Day Foundation have developed this programme to celebrate greener cities and towns worldwide. To spread Tree Cities across the globe, they collaborate with similar organisations to provide support to community leaders.

“Urban forests help define a sense of place and well-being where people live, work, play, and learn. The Tree Cities of the World programme is an international effort to recognize cities and towns committed to ensuring that their urban forests and trees are properly maintained, sustainably managed, and duly celebrated.” – Arbor Day Foundation

Tree Cities graphic

Here is a link to the Tree Cities homepage, where you can read more information about this global programme.

What are the benefits of our Tree City status?

Trees make money: they are an asset. Reducing costs for energy, managing storm-water, and controlling erosion.

Public relations and publicity have not been scarce. We hope to continue our growth with our many activities to improve Birmingham’s green-space.

Boosts community property values & strengthens community relations & pride, by showing our commitment through the delivery of our projects.

The 5 core standards provide a framework for future endeavors, but BTP already met the criteria, so we will continue as we began.

Tree Cities of the World Conference 2024

Tree People Network Day

Urban trees are now widely recognised for the array of ecosystem services and benefits that they provide. Politically, trees have risen a long way up the agenda. They are now at the forefront of tools in the fight against climate change, loss of biodiversity, air quality, the Urban Heat Island effect, flooding etc. There is also wide recognition for tree planting, establishment, and tree care across political parties.

Urban Forestry and community groups are key players in the collective effort to protect, promote and plant trees across the UK. A dearth of coordinated, tailored support for these groups means that their potential for positive, widespread action and impact has not been realised. If that potential could be unlocked and coordinated, the protection, planting of and promotion of urban trees and green spaces could be scaled up – with local people at its heart.

Trees for Cities and Birmingham TreePeople have joined forces, to scope the idea of a new national network of Urban Forestry community groups in the UK. The purpose of the “Tree People Network” (working title) is to build community capacity, knowledge and skills to plant, protect and promote urban trees and woods.

Tree People Network Day

As part of the scoping phase for this project, Birmingham TreePeople and Trees for Cities have planned an initial in-person, one day consultation event in June 2024, with a selection of existing Urban Forestry community groups. The feedback and findings from this event would lay the ground for developing a national network.

If you’re a member of a community group involved in urban trees and engagement, you won’t want to miss this – the first of its kind, as UK Tree Cities meet to learn, share, and connect. Tree People Network Day is taking place at The Exchange in Birmingham on Wednesday 12th June 2024. This gives attendees a chance to connect with other urban forestry and community groups from across the country in a unique event.

We have a range of panelists and speakers from various parts of the industry sharing their knowledge:

Keynote Speaker: Mark Johnston: Independent Scholar for Arboriculture, Landscape, & Urban Forestry
Maria Adebowale-Schwarte: CEO, Foundation for Future London, & Founder, Living Space Project
Georgie Logan-Thorpe: Senior Urban Forests Manager, T4C
Tonia Clark: Principal Finance and Bids Officer, BCC/BTP
Russell Horsey MICFor: Director & Chartered Urban Forester, Keynote speaker on Community Urban Forestry